Crawford resurrects pro career as an Outlaw Las Vegas XFL team signs former Whittell star |

Crawford resurrects pro career as an Outlaw Las Vegas XFL team signs former Whittell star

Former Whittell High linebacker Mike Crawford is healthy again, and so are his prospects for resuming his professional football career.

The 6-foot-2, 245-pound Crawford was signed by the Las Vegas Outlaws of the newly formed XFL on Monday.

Crawford, 26, played for two NFL seasons under Jimmy Johnson with the Miami Dolphins but was released in 1999 when he was slow to recover from an abdominal muscle injury.

Crawford was unavailable for comment.

The Outlaws are excited to add the 1997 NFL sixth-round draft choice to their roster.

“Mike’s a big-play linebacker who was hampered by injuries during his years with the Dolphins,” said Outlaws coach Jim Criner. “He has the talent to play top-level professional football, and that’s what we’re giving him a chance to do in Las Vegas.

The Outlaws found a roster spot for Crawford after defensive end Martin Harrison and offensive tackle were placed on the Reserve-Did Not Report list.

“Mike really impressed us during his workouts with his size and intelligence, and we will look to slot him into our (strong-side) linebacker position,” Criner said.

Crawford’s last appearance as a football player in Las Vegas is forever imprinted on the hearts of UNLV fans. As a senior linebacker for Nevada, Crawford was voted MVP of the 1996 Las Vegas Bowl. He made 14 tackles, forced a fumbled and picked off a pass.

The eight-team league begins its 10-game schedule Feb 3, with Las Vegas hosting the New York/New Jersey Hitmen. Other XFL teams include the Chicago Enforcers, Los Angeles Xtreme, Orlando Rage, San Francisco Demons, Memphis Maniax and Birmingham Bolts.

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